Budget prompts arguments among Sutton politicians
George Osborne's budget has met a mixed reception among Sutton's politicians.
Headline announcements made by the chancellor last week included changes to the way pensions can be redeemed, an increase in the amount people earn before tax and cuts in bingo duty and beer tax - as well as the introduction of a new pound coin.
Liberal Democrat MPs Paul Burstow and Tom Brake both welcomed the Tory chancellor's measures but accused the Conservatives of taking credit for Liberal Democrat ideas.
And Conservative candidate for Sutton and Cheam Paul Scully commended the budget but accused his rivals of playing party politics.
Sutton's MPs Paul Burstow and Tom Brake
However Labour candidate for Sutton and Cheam Emily Brothers said the measures will do little to improve life for people in the area.
Mr Brake gave special mention to the plan to raise the point at which people start to pay income tax to £10,000, a rise in the minimum wage, tax free child care, a freeze on fuel duty and cuts and freezes to taxes on alcohol.
He added: "All of these changes have been possible because of Liberal Democrats in government. By producing a long term economic plan, the Lib Dems have been able to deliver tax cuts which are building a stronger economy and a fairer society."
Mr Burstow added: "The message of this budget is the Liberal Democrats promised a £700 tax cut for workers and delivered an £800 cut."
However Mr Scully dismissed the Lib Dem duo's claims. He said: "It's another case of the local Lib Dem MPs sitting on the sidelines playing party politics whilst Conservatives in government take decisive action to help savers and workers whilst building a resilient economy."
Miss Brothers was not impressed with either party's take on the measures. She said: "The Paul Burstow-Scully supported coalition may change the shape of the pound coin, but they’ve done nothing to protect the value of it in the pockets of hard working local people.
"The reality for residents of Sutton and Cheam is that standards of living are not rising steadily and sustainably, but falling sharply and steeply – down 44 out of 45 months under the coalition."
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